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Restaurant Owners Demand Greater Capacity, Later Curfew On Eve Of NYC's Indoor Dining Reboot

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Limited indoor dining reopens in New York City on Friday, but restaurant owners and local politicians say it’s just not enough to keep the hard hit industry afloat. CBS2's Marcia Kramer reports.

Video Transcript

- Limited indoor dining in New York City begins tomorrow. But restaurant owners say it's just not enough to keep the hard-hit industry afloat.

- So they want the governor to increase capacity and also extend the hours. CBS2's political reporter, Marcia Kramer, has this.

MARCIA KRAMER: A silent piano sits on the stage of Swing 46, a Midtown supper club. It's empty now and will stay empty, even though indoor dining can officially restart a New York City tomorrow.

[MUSIC PLAYING]

The normally boisterous bar will not be reopening. Because of Governor Cuomo with 25% capacity limit, they can't make enough to make ends meet.

- We usually have a beautiful Valentine's show-- lots of people coming, and it's a beautiful night. The owner and I-- we discussed it. And it just-- we didn't think that it would be the right thing to do. It wouldn't make enough money to cover the costs

MARCIA KRAMER: She's just one of many in the hospitality industry begging Governor Cuomo to change his mind. Expand capacity in New York City to 50% like everywhere else in the state. Allow restaurants to stay open until midnight instead of the current 10:00 PM curfew.

MICHELLE COLLIER: An entire industry is being wiped out, and we need at least a 50% capacity to be able to operate. And we're trying to hang on. We have bills to pay.

MARCIA KRAMER: Elected officials and restaurant owners rallied in Brooklyn to demand the same thing-- equity with the rest of the state.

LAURIE CUOMBO: Our small businesses cannot survive at 25%.

- Right.

LAURIE CUOMBO: It's almost as if we are forcing them to shut their doors.

- This is a small ask of the governor-- to just increase the hours to midnight, which would mean a boost in revenue

JEFFREY GARCIA: 25% is just not enough. They're not going to make the tips. They're not going to make the money necessary to survive.

ERIC ADAMS: You can't cross the street in the Bronx and step into Yonkers and act like we're in a different state.

MARCIA KRAMER: A spokesman for Governor Cuomo says he's open to changing capacity, depending on infection rates. I'm Marcia Kramer, CBS2 News.